Thursday, 31 July 2008
Tuesday, 29 July 2008
In the beginning of the second clip where they show 4th street, and a man taking pictures is right where Allen was. He saw the moose run by as well.
You can watch the clip here and here
It's a soft-sounding word, "never," but its velvety timbre can't hide its
sharp edges. Especially to a small cat who has broken the rules and conjured the
word in the first place. He sat down hard, soaked and cold. In his deepest bones
he knew that no matter how long he stared at the cold water, he would never see
his mother again. Never pressed down on him. It grabbed him by the neck and
shook him. He sucked in a deep breath, sucked in all that never and started to
sneeze. Never filled his nose, his eyes, his soaking fur. (page 101)
There are sentient trees, ancient shape-shifters, and myth and magic. Lullabies and secrets that only the trees know. Yet it all seems so real.
Sunday, 27 July 2008
That mystery was solved in the first chapter (oh, and it comes up again at the end of the book in a strange way too)
I didn't think much about the cover when I first got the book from the library...but after reading it I really love the cover. It says so much! The red dress, the urn she's holding, the sweep of her arm...it all really portrays the book well.
The author has a great way of of writing how kids often seem to think...at least it reminded me of some of the things I thought when I was a kid. This book really made me think about how kids often don't always understand what is going on and they form their own conclusions - which are sometimes quite erroneous. That's what happens with Lucky and that's why she runs away.
The anonymous people struggled with the next step after rock bottom, the getting-control-of-your-life step. Lucky pounded the Formica table with both fists, which made HMS Beagle leap to her feet and look at Lucky woddiedly. It's almost impossible to get control of your life when you're only ten. It's other people, adults, who have control of your life, because they can abandon you. (page 80)
Lucky is 10 years old. She talks about things like 'the meanness gland in her heart' and the 'crevices full of questions' in her brain. I love some of the things that go through Lucky's mind:
Lucky felt very wonderful about her Heroic Deed of figuring out howto chase the snake away without killing it in a gruesome way or waiting for it to die of old age. Plus, if it had been a rattlesnake, nobody got bitten. She went inside, thinking she had to figure out some kind of screen to put on the vent to keep the snake from coming back. At that moment Lucky knew she was a highly evolved human being. (page 54)
Or how about this excerpt:
Lucky had the same jolting feeling as when you're in a big hurry to pee and you pull down your pants fast and back up to the toilet without looking - but some man or boy before you has forgotten to put the seat down. So your bototm, which is expecting the usual nicely shaped plastic toilet seat, instead lands shocked on the thin rim of the toilet bowl, which is quiet a lot colder and lower. Your bottom get a panic of bad surprise. That was the same thump-on-the-heart shock Lucky got finding out the Miles's mother was in jail. (page 73)
The odd thing about the book is the flap seems to portray that the book is about the girl having to run away. However, that doesn't happen until 100 pages into the book. I found myself wondering what this book was about anyway because I kept waiting for the running away part!
She has some cute friends in the story - her friend Miles who can't read yet and carries around 'Are you my mother?' all the time. That was a book Jill loved and I read it about 4872 times - and in the book Lucky is as tired of hearing that story as I was back in the day. :0) She also has a friend named Lincoln. Lincoln's mother figures he is destined to be the president of the United States. However, he's much more interested in tying knots (tying knots?? Yup....)
Lucky wished she were an artist too, and could organize all the complicated strands of her life - the urn she still had, the strange crematory man, Brigitte and Miles, HMS Beagle, and Short Sammy, the Captain adn the anonymous people and Dot and even Lincoln himself, and weave the mitno a beautiful ten-strand knot. (p. 69)
All in all, I think it's a great book. It was a great Sunday afternoon read.
I have a new passion: the thrill of the hunt! A lot of women love shopping - but I'm not really a retail store kind of person. No malls for me. I love finding great deals at strange little stores. I found this gem at Value Village this week for a mere $6.00. It's so beautiful!!
Saturday, 26 July 2008
I drove them down to Grandma's this morning and then drove back in the afternoon. I had planned to go to the temple in the afternoon but I had some shoppers flake on me and so I had to hurry home and do some work (grrrr!) I did, however, have a marvelous time driving back by myself. It isn't often that I'm alone (well, alone with Chico) for that period of time. I had some great thinking time and time listening to books on CD. It was very good for my soul!
I got home and found some new shoppers for the outstanding shops relatively quickly. Then I decided I'd clean up the house since it will most likely stay relatively clean all week. I love to clean the house and then just sit and look at it stay clean. Usually that only lasts a few hours (or until everyone gets home)...but this week that should be a little different.
I'm quite excited about this week. I plan to go to aquacize every day, walk every day, do yoga every day, do some major organizing in my house, and a ton of reading. Makes me feel great just thinking about it! :0)
Friday, 25 July 2008
Apparently the lake goes on for 12 miles. So beautiful!
Jill fell in the river quite early on I guess. This is her drying off and getting a snack.
Thursday, 24 July 2008
Ready to slam that ball! (And to make her mother chase the ball)
And this is so cute I couldn't resist posting it.....Peirce and his moves....what a guy!
Wednesday, 23 July 2008
I laughed my head off at that one.
Monday, 21 July 2008
I don't even know where to start with summing up this book. There's a Space Hotel USA, they interact with the President and some astronauts that are more like the 3 stooges than anything else. Then there's the attacking Vermicious Knids and an amazing battle. Oh, then the grandparents eat some anti-aging wonka-vite candy and end up as babies and in minusland (where you go if you get too young)...and then they have to eat vita-wonk to get back to the age they were. It all ends up with the President of the United States giving them a big award for their bravery fighting off the Vermicious Knids at the beginning of the story.
I think it's quite a disjointed story. It's like eating scrambled story...all sorts of crazy things put into one. It also had a lot of references to US politics that Peirce didn't quite appreciate. He doesn't know of The White House or the reverence Americans give the space program. He learned a bit about Americans by reading this book! And going into elevators has been much more interesting lately. We have great conversations about where the elevator could possibly take us. :0)
Peirce was hoping for another sequel to the Charlie books....but that's it. That's all he wrote when it comes to Charlie (thank goodness!) I don't know what was in Roald Dahl's head and heart when he wrote this book...but it's a good thing he had previously written some good books. He would have never rose to stardom on this one if you ask me.
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Saturday, 19 July 2008
And some more nice kids! The best part is they all get along really really well. They're fun to be around.
Two of the cutest boys you'll meet!
Just as we left we came across a mother duck with four little baby ducks following along behind. One of the kids took this picture of the cute little duckies.
When we were looking at the elephants there was a docent there with lots of interesting elephant things to look at. It was really a quick to stand back and listen to the kids talk with him. They had lots of questions and had an amazing discussion with the docent.
Oh, and the bear! What a riot it is to stand right in front of where he paces back and forth. The kids LOVED it!
I thought that might wear them out - this picture is all a lie. They said they were tired...and I suppose in some ways they were (walking back to the van was PAINFUL!!)...but they still wanted to go swimming when we got home! Unfortunately I was just too pooped!
Friday, 18 July 2008
No more signs like this:
"It's offensive! Doesn't anyone know how to use a colon! It should be SLOW: Children at Play"
Today Jill got to go to a writing camp that was put on by YouthInkIt Magazine. It was two days of real intense work...and she loved it. Each day I picked her up she just talked and talked non-stop about the things she got to do and learn and participate in. Today she said to me, "Mom! I just spent an entire day writing and researching and interviewing and thinking and typing and reading....and I LOVED it!"
Today she got to interview an Olympic bronze medalist from the Canadian Women's Curling Team. SHE EVEN GOT TO HOLD THE MEDAL (in all caps so you can get a better idea of how she told me the story). The magazine will be published in the fall with the article in it that she and 3 other girls put together. Watch for it here.
Oh, and the favorite quote of the day:
Thursday, 17 July 2008
I just sat and stared when I saw the title. Part of me really doesn't like thinking about all that. And yet I feel a real need to go back there often.
And I still cry....a lot. But I don't do it so much in front of people anymore. If anyone asked how I was doing or asked something about Destiny I couldn't stop the tears. Now I can talk about her without having the tears flow.
My life has been forever changed by our little Destiny. In many ways my healing process has been much easier than a lot of people I have met that have gone through this experience. And sometimes I think it hasn't been. I am very good at staying busy and filling my days so that I don't have to think about it too much....and then sometimes I can't do anything and I need to spend time just thinking, crying, and missing her.
I find it really helpful to talk....although I don't do it often because people are often quite uncomfortable with the whole topic. Sharing with others who've gone through this is also very helpful. I'm amazed at the number of people that have also experienced a stillborn baby.
There is a couple that was in our ward that was due at the same as I was due with Destiny. Their baby has also had a struggle and required heart surgery when she was only weeks old. I find myself terribly curious about how their little girl is doing - but when I run into them I find myself trying to avoid them so that I don't have to make small talk and admire how cute their little girl is. I don't want them to feel bad about how sad I feel.
My life has been forever changed by this experience. When my older children are away I tend to worry about them a little more. I also feel so heartbroken when I hear stories of people abusing children or just being plain old unkind. I feel a need for a little more kindness, a little more love, and a need to slow down and enjoy people more.
....and then sometimes I don't know how to describe what I feel.
Wednesday, 16 July 2008
One of the classes that I've never forgotten was one on creativity. I remember going into it quite curious about how they'd teach a workshop over 4 days on creativity. When I left I realized there was a whole world of information and I had only sat on the tip of the iceburg on this topic.
Today I was cruising around some blogs and came across one on this very topic. I watched the video and it stirred up all those questions and ideas in my mind again.
The presentation is by a man named Sir Ken Robinson, who is an expert in the field of creativity (can you imagine?!) He says the creativity in education is as important as literacy and that we should treat it with the same status. I couldn't agree more!
I really worked hard before Jill started school to figure out what school would be the best for her. I remember going to one school that I was quite excited about - and after touring it and having an extensive conversation with the principal, realized it really wasn't for us. I just knew in my gut that she wasn't meant to be in a classroom where they sat in rows at desks and were run through a academically intense program. I knew she would certainly be able to meet their standards - but I worried that it would squash the creativity that was so evident in her personality. We finally found the school that we thought was a good match and off we went. All along the way I've had an amazing number of people want to sit down with me and persuade me to take my children out of that school to attend another program. For some reason nothing else has felt quite right. One of the keys for me is having room for creativity.
This video is quite amazing. It's from a website called TED. TED stands for Technology, Entertainment, Design. It started out as a conference...but from what I can gather from the website, it's turned into much more. Their mission is to spread ideas. How interesting is that??! The 'about' page says: We believe passionately in the power of ideas to change attitudes, lives and ultimately, the world. So we're building here a clearinghouse that offers free knowledge and inspiration from the world's most inspired thinkers, and also a community of curious souls to engage with ideas and each other. This site, launched April 2007, is an ever-evolving work in progress, and you're an important part of it.
Oh boy....I think I've really hit gold here!!
Tuesday, 15 July 2008
Allen picked up this book for me. It's a quick read...and I'm not sure I'll find a place to store it on my book shelves. While it is interesting it seems more to be yet another book riding on the wave of The DaVinci Code. The author doesn't really give any insights on the 'what's' of Dan Brown's life...just re-tells the facts. I continued with it because I seem to have an ever-present curiosity about people that write blockbuster books.
Personally, I think if you're interested in finding out about Dan Brown, just do a search on the internet. You'll probably get just as much information there. No wonder it was in the reduced section at Chapters. :0) I'm glad we didn't pay full price for the book! LOL
Monday, 14 July 2008
"I'm sure you can do better mom."
Saturday, 12 July 2008
Jill taking off in a boat. Eventually her two pals jumped ship and she lost grip of the paddles and so she left the boat too...but we made her swim back out to get the paddles and the boat. Good thing that girl is a good swimmer!
Hmmmm....a picture of a parent on our blog....weird. We usually only take pictures of the kids.
Peirce being made into a mermaid.....or is that a merman??
Now Jill is one too....and she appears to be anatomically correct! :0)
Jill enjoyed making sand art in the afternoon....these are a few of her creations.
Friday, 11 July 2008
"Well, this is just....I'm astonished! It doesn't fit with them."
He put his arms around me, spoke softly into my ear. "Because something is not everything. You know? And because nobody knows what goes on in other families, because families lie about themselves to other people. Not only to other people but to one another. And to themselves."